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Commonwealth Fund Commission national health care scorecard: US scores 64 out of 100
Date:10/18/2011

to 2007, rates vary twofold to fourfold across states.

"This scorecard illustrates that focused efforts to change the health care system for the better are working and are worth our investment," said Maureen Bisognano, President and CEO of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, and a Commonwealth Fund Board and Commission member. "Yet, the U.S. still spends up to twice as much on health care as other high-income countries, but too often fails to deliver what people needtimely access to high quality, efficient health care. The places in the U.S. and around the world that set the benchmarks prove that it is possible to do better."

Failing To Improve

Despite some quality improvements, the scorecard finds that in many areas U.S. health system performance has either failed to improve, or declined over time.

Steep Decline in Access and Affordability

Access to health care and health care affordability stand out for how quickly and significantly they deteriorated. By 2010, 81 million adults 44 percent of all adults under age 65 were either underinsured or uninsured at some point during the year up from 61 million in 2003. For those with insurance, premiums rose far faster than incomes. In 2003, a majority of people (57 percent) lived in a state where health insurance premiums averaged less than 15 percent of average (median) incomes. By 2009, only four percent of the population lived in such states. In addition, by 2010, 40 percent of working-age adults had medical debt or faced problems paying medical bills up from 34 percent in 2005.

Broad Evidence of Inefficient Care

The U.S. also does particularly poorly on measures of health system efficiency, scoring only 53 out of a possible 100. This area of the scorecard includes such issues as evidence of duplicative services, high rates of hospital readmissions, relatively low use of electronic information systems, and high administrative c
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Contact: Mary Mahon
mm@cmwf.org
212-606-3853
Commonwealth Fund
Source:Eurekalert

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